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Boise State to host Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program

On3 imageby:Andy Wittry03/09/23


Boise State‘s athletic department held a free tax preparation and filing session Thursday through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) grant program. The tax session is open to “all qualifying members of the community” but it will also provide accessible guidance and services to Boise State athletes who may need to file taxes related to income earned through name, image and likeness agreements.

It’s an example of creative programming from the athletic department that received the award for “Best Institutional Program” at the inaugural NIL Summit last June.

The NCAA released NIL guidance last October that affirmed it’s impermissible for a school to “provide services (other than education) to support NIL activity (e.g., graphics designer, tax preparation, contract review, etc.) unless the same benefit is generally available to the institution’s students. Not only the VITA session available to all Boise State students, it’s available to the Boise, Idaho, community at large.

Boise State associate athletic director for strategic communications and business development Mike Walsh is one of the volunteers the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) certified to assist Boise State College of Business and Economics lecturer Kathy Hurley, who’s leading the VITA site at the university.

VITA is an IRS initiative that offers “free tax preparation and filing services for low- to moderate-income individuals (generally less than $60,000), persons with disabilities, the elderly and limited English speakers,” according to a news release from Boise State.

Attendees at the VITA site can prepare their own state and federal tax returns with the supervision of volunteers or a volunteer can prepare and file their returns.

Boise State hosted a three-part financial education series

Boise State also planned a three-part financial education series for its athletes and athletic department staff members. The three topics were budgeting, investing and tax education.

Boise State adjunct professor Whitney Hansen hosted the budgeting session. Young Money University founder Todd Romer hosted the investing session and CPA Brian Yeargain led the part on tax education.

During the budgeting session, freshmen learned about the “new realities of living off campus” as an upperclassman. Hansen taught them how to establish their budgets for paying rent, utilities and other necessities.

Romer discussed how athletes can begin investing safely with the goal of establishing long-term wealth. Yeargain explained the differences between W2 wages and self-employment and royalty income. He also taught attendees about “common deductible expenses and how contributing to a retirement account can be tax advantageous.”